Soon to be Academy of Pelvic Health Physical Therapy

Posts Tagged ‘Emerging Leader Award’


Section on Women’s Health Honors Outstanding Volunteers for 2017

Posted on: April 5th, 2017 by Aika Barzhaxynova No Comments


 CONTACT: Carrie Pagliano, SOWH Vice President, [email protected]

 Kristin Clarke, SOWH/AMG Account Executive, 571-344-5422, [email protected]

 MCLEAN, VA: The Section on Women’s Health has presented awards to nearly a dozen volunteers for outstanding performance in the areas of leadership, research and longtime service. The honorees received their awards February 18 at the 2017 SOWH Annual Business Meeting during the American Physical Therapy Association’s Combined Sections Meeting in San Antonio, Texas.

“We are fortunate to have so many hard-working volunteers committed to the Section on Women’s Health and to the profession of pelvic and abdominal physical therapy, as well as to people’s health at all life stages,” says SOWH Vice President Carrie Pagliano, PT, DPT, OCS, WCS, who oversees the awards process. “These winners each have inspired and changed us with their generous gifts of knowledge, volunteerism, and time throughout the years.”

Below are the winners:

2017 Elizabeth Noble Award

Goal: SOWH Founder Elizabeth Noble was a driving force behind the development of the field of obstetric and gynecological physical therapy in the United States. This award in her name is SOWH’s highest honor, and it is given to a member in good standing who has provided extraordinary service to SOWH or the field of physical therapy for women.

  • Winner: Nancy Donovan, PT, PhD, who served as editor-in-chief of SOWH’s top-rated membership benefit–the Journal of Women’s Health Physical Therapy–for more than a decade

2017 Friend of the Section Awards

Goal: This award recognizes anyone or any company that went above and beyond to help SOWH in the past year.

  • Winner 1: Karen Miles, CMP, whose leadership in the Meeting Services department of SOWH’s affiliated American Physical Therapy Association has helped ensure a high-quality conference and programming experience for SOWH volunteers and attendees for many years
  • Winner 2: Heidi Gagnon of Prometheus Group, who has demonstrated deep loyalty to the Section through her work at Prometheus Group, a top financial supporter and industry partner of the Section

2017 Volunteer of the Year

Goal: To recognize any SOWH volunteer whose loyal service to SOWH has had unique and profound impact  

  • Winner: Susan Steffes, PT, CD(DONA), a longtime SOWH instructor who is so committed to SOWH education that she is donating the intellectual property for her obstetrics course to the Section

2017 APTA Emerging Leader Award

Goal: To identify and honor one physical therapist or physical therapist assistant “emerging leader” from each APTA chapter or section, who has demonstrated extraordinary service early in his or her physical therapy career. The individual should have made exceptional overall accomplishments and contributions to the American Physical Therapy Association, the Section, and the physical therapy profession to advance APTA’s vision.

  • Winner: Audra Zastrow, SPT, a young professional whose volunteerism and ongoing development of her leadership skills have demonstrated great enthusiasm for SOWH and this profession

In addition to these awards, the Section announced the winners of its 2017 Research Awards for Outstanding Poster Abstract and Outstanding Platform during a Platform Research Review Session at CSM.

2017 Top Post SubmissionCarla Franck, PT, DPT, OCS, FAAOMPT; Heather Moky, PT, DPT; and Alicia Emerson Kavchak, PT, DPT, MS, OCS, FAAOMPT. “The Successful Management of Foot Drop in a Postpartum Patient with Use of Pelvic Floor and Orthopaedic Manual Physical Therapy: A Case Report”

2017 Top Platform SubmissionCorey Simon, DPT, PhD; Nathanial Eckert, PhD; Joseph Riley III, PhD, for their abstract, “Women with Fibromyalgia Demonstrate Reduced Pain Inhibition Capacity Compared to Pain-Free Controls”

Elaine Meadows Research Scholar Award

Goal: To defray the costs of travel to attend the APTA Combined Sections Meeting (CSM), disseminate research findings and foster national networking of research colleagues. The winner must be a Section member and lead presenting author of an abstract accepted by SOWH for poster/platform presentation at CSM. The candidate is selected based on justification of need for a travel scholarship, the submitted abstract, relevance of his or her research to women’s health physical therapy, and the completed application.

  • Winner: Kelli Brizzolara, PT, PhD

2017 Combined Sections Meeting Scholarship Award

Goal: To defray registration cost for CSM for one student physical therapist interested in the women’s health field.

  • Winner: Ariana Jones, SPT

2017 Research Grant Award $10,000

Goal: To have the Grant Review Committee select a research proposal each year and fund it for either $10,000 or two $5,000 awards each year.

  • Winner: “Fascial Scar Mobilization Techniques in Treating Chronic Caesarian Section Scar Pain: A Randomized Clinical Trial” Investigating Team: Jennifer Wasserman, Karen Abraham, Mary Massery, and Beth Marcoux.

Outgoing Board of Director Members

Goal: To pay tribute to the achievements of each outgoing board director and Nominating Committee chair.

  • Outgoing Board Member, Programming: Sandra Hilton, PT, who drove and successfully managed the growth of SOWH’s programming at APTA’s Combined Sections Meetings, including recruitment of international speakers
  • Outgoing Board Member, Financial Development: Sarah Haag, PT, DPT, MS, WCS, who raised tens of thousands of dollars for SOWH through industry partnerships and strategic outreach during her tenure
  • Outgoing Nominating Committee Chair: Blair Green, PT, DPT, OCS, PHC, CSCS, whose leadership and dedication led to competitive board election slates and a transition to electronic membership voting

SOWH also recognized outstanding contributors to SOWH education. For that announcement, see here.


Celebrating its 40th anniversary, Section on Women’s Health-American Physical Therapy Association (SOWH) is a professional membership association of nearly 3,000 physical therapists treating patients across the life span and around the globe. Members provide the latest evidence-based physical therapy services to everyone, including LGBTQ populations, young athletes, childbearing women, peri-menopausal mothers, and men with pelvic health complications. In addition to providing top-quality continuing education, the Section provides networking opportunities, access to peer-reviewed research, inclusion in a PT Locator directory, and lab training. Learn more at






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